Flying high with IT

“IT is important for building and maintaining strong partnerships between business teams and for ensuring that all the channels for delivering strong customer satisfaction are in order,”
says Pankaj Khare, Director IT, IndiGo Airlines

Express Computer Team

Pankaj Khare is one of those who like to thrive in changing times. He says that when he was young he decided to have a career in Information Technology because this field is completely dynamic. “Nothing can ever remain static in Information Technology,” he says. “This is a field that is always buffeted by innovations and disruptive technologies. New technologies emerge when they are least expected and lead to paradigm shift in the way people manage their lives and the businesses operate. This is such a dynamic field that you hardly have any time to feel bored.”

Currently he works as the Director IT in India’s leading airline—IndiGo. His responsibilities include the management of the IT operations for Data Centre, Networks, Contact Centre, End User Services across IndiGo offices—contact center, airport and Cargo locations. It gives him great satisfaction to see a significant impact of his work and that of his team in optimising various procedures at IndiGo, which is well known for its on-time and hassle-free operations.

About his work in IndiGo, Pankaj Khare says, “For me it is wonderful to work for a business that is serving the needs of so many passengers daily. I love that each day is different and there is the thrill of meeting new people every day, sharing knowledge with them about the latest innovations and new ideas in IT.”

“I am motivated by the fact that the company has given me responsibilities that match my skill-set and there is ample room for me to find growth and satisfaction in what I do,” he adds.

Efficiency through IT
Pankaj acknowledges that in the early years of his career he did find it challenging to understand new technologies and develop strategies for optimal deployment of IT resources. But with the consultation of his peers in the organisation and with other IT experts, he managed to overcome all the challenges.
He informs that the consolidation of IT Shared service for the group companies with different line of business was a challenging project. There were various levels of legacy that needed to be addressed before entire system could be placed on the same IT platform.

He and the IT team at IndiGo have been instrumental in developing the Cloud and Mobility solutions that have been implemented at IndiGo. “Technologies like Cloud, Mobility and Big Data not only help in reducing the cost of operations, they are also very effective in driving efficiency,” he says.

He is especially fascinated by the benefits that can be derived from Big Data analytics. “Big Data space continues to evolve and better solutions are becoming available,” he says. “Now there is scope for extracting much more vital information, more quickly, from the high-volume, high-velocity and high-variety data assets that you possess. This information can be used to create substantial economic value and help the business in improving its decision-making, risk management and customer service.”

He agrees with the idea that SMAC is a disruptive technology, but he also says, “You have to understand that there is a lot of creative innovation that lies at the core of SMAC. The aspects of Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud are enabling businesses to improve their operations in ways that we could scarcely imagine four or five years ago.”

“IT is important for building and maintaining strong partnerships between business teams and for ensuring that all the channels for delivering strong customer satisfaction are in order,” says Pankaj. He is of the view that his strengths lie in collaborating with the business wing of the airlines to develop IT initiatives that can lead to effective procedures for resolving cross-functional issues. “Basically we seek to manage and develop an IT strategy that is fully aligned with the ultimate business goals of the organisation.”

The area of Information Technology is ever-changing, new hardware and software solutions that are often better than the earlier versions arrive at regular intervals and shake up the market, so what steps should the IT departments in organisations take to ensure that their IT systems are consistently up to date? Pankaj acknowledges that even for the most experienced IT professionals it can sometimes become difficult to keep track of all the innovation that is happening in the IT space. He goes on to add that “the innovations in IT happens only because there is a demand for new and innovative solutions by the consumers and the business houses. Innovation leads to better outcomes for everyone.”

“Innovation in IT,” he explains, “is essentially being driven by a range of factors, like the critical need for improving the efficiency of business processes. There is the need for prioritising business needs, recognising and managing complexity. The focus of IT managers is to encourage technology adoption for delivering tangible benefits to the business. Such innovation is important for the long term success of the organisation.”

Personal Interests
Pankaj is inspired by Jack Welch. “I am fascinated by the story of Jack Welch’s life. For almost two decades Jack was at the helm of GE, he turned the company around. His tenure saw the value of GE rising by almost 4000%.” About his own future ambitions, Pankaj says that he would like continue working with the passion in the field of IT. He hopes to inspire many more people to adopt better technology to bring ease to business operations.
An avid reader of quality literature, Pankaj also hopes to someday make a name for himself as a writer by penning his autobiography. But it is not as if he is all work and no play. He enjoys swimming and listening to music. Hawaii is his favourite holiday destination.

Pankaj Khare
Full Name Pankaj Khare
Current Designation Director IT, IndiGo Airlines
Expertise IT Infrastructure Services, Data Center Transformation, Build IT shared services
Work Experience 20 Years
Favourite Quote Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever
Favourite Book The Godfather
Favorite Destination Hawaii
Favorite Gadget for Work iPhone
Favorite Gadget for Personal Use iPad
CIOCIO innovationIndigo airlinesinnovation ITPankaj Khare
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